DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Sinclair College said it is building a data degree pathway for high school students after receiving a $576,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).                                 

With the NSF grant, Sinclair College said it is developing a data analytics technician pathway for students to earn short-term certificates while still in high school and support their transition into completing additional certificates and degrees at the college level. The project aims to prepare students for the growing demand for data analytics technicians. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, data analyst jobs will see a 20% growth through the year 2028.

“This is an incredible opportunity through the National Science Foundation to enhance and strengthen Sinclair’s efforts to prepare students for the rapidly growing field of data analytics,” said Paul Hansford, Associate Professor – Sinclair College Computer Science/Information Technology Department. “This project allows Sinclair to engage with high school juniors and seniors throughout the Dayton region and provide them with the opportunity to earn credentials quickly and pave a path to ‘Big Data’ careers.”                              

Project partners include the Miami Valley Tech Prep Consortium serving approximately 40 high school locations in a ten-county area in Ohio, the Warren County Career Center and the Miami Valley Career Technology Center, John Carroll University, and a group of industry partners and advisors.      

Sinclair College currently offers an Associate of Applied Science in Data Analytics, a 1-year Data Analytics Technical Certificate, and a Data Fundamentals Short-Term Technical Certificate. The NSF grant will allow Sinclair to expand on those offerings by providing the following:   

  • A new Data Literacy Foundations short-term postsecondary certificate students can begin in high school to accelerate their completion of a Sinclair Data Analytics Associate Degree 
  • Three new college-level courses (Data Literacy, Data Science Mathematics, and Advanced Python for Data Analytics) for both high school and college students aligned to Sinclair certificates and degrees (fully operational in fall 2023) 
  • Career awareness and academic modules for high school juniors and seniors infused with experiential learning activities to increase interest in subject matter and data-related careers 
  • Data competitions for high school and college students to incite interest in data careers and to teach the life cycle of data using real-world data sets supplied by industry partners 
  • Annual high school teacher workshop to provide high school instructors information about Big Data careers and academic pathways 
  • New Service-Learning projects for college students involving experiential learning at non-profit organizations  

Learn more about Sinclair’s Computer Science/Information Technology degrees and certificates on Sinclair’s website.